Call of Duty: Black Ops II has just hit the market, and along side, the Playstation Vita receives it's first entry in the CoD series. Is it something worth diving into, or should it have been redacted from the records?
So it's that time of year again; time for a new Call of Duty. This time around however, we're getting two games – Black Ops II (which we will be reviewing later this week) and Black Ops Declassified, for the Playstation Vita. Declassified is not, as I first believed, a port or adaptation of Black Ops II, but rather, it's own game. I've been looking forward to a good FPS on the Vita for a while now, so I was very curious about trying out Declassified.
There isn't much point in mentioning the story in Declassified, but then again, story hasn't always been the strong point of the Call of Duty franchise. The box says "Uncover the classified operation that occurred between the original [black ops] and call of duty: black ops II". That's pretty much what you do, but if you expected the game to actually connect the two games by providing a bridge in the narrative, you're going to be disappointed.
It's time to kill masked bad guys again… on the Vita this time!
The only real narrative to be heard in the game is told between missions in a messy, flashy, video sequence and even then, it's difficult to follow why one mission leads to another, or what the point of it all is. In one mission, you're destroying coding machines in Vietnam; in the next you're freeing CIA agents held hostage on a time limit. You jump between the protagonists from the original Black Ops, but little is done to further their back story or flesh out their characters.
This isn't strange however, and though I enjoy a good narrative, I understand why Declassified lacks one: The game is built to be played on the go; designed for quick fun, with little focus being put on creating a deeper immersive experience. Let's face it, when you're in the subway, you're not going to be getting a home-cinema experience anyway.